Some people know they are born to start their own business, work at a large organization, or work at a startup. Yet, many candidates prefer to experience or at least hear from both sides. Similarly, some of us joined Picovoice right after graduation, and some after a multinational company experience. Yet, for all of us, life at Picovoice has been much more challenging and satisfying than we could have imagined. Why? Because we deal with challenging real-life problems every day. Do you know the number of companies that

  • are capable of training AI engines and models from scratch?
  • can build voice AI engines and models - that can perform well?
  • offer privacy and user-centric AI models? - fully, not just on paper.
  • share enterprise-grade on-device AI models under a Free Plan?
  • is able to run on-device AI across platforms without sacrificing performance?

The answer to each question is only a handful of companies. If we tweak questions, the answers to each can be only Picovoice. As you guessed, there are only a handful of companies, not because these subjects are unimportant but because each question requires technical knowledge, creativity, and grit. All team members have these skills, regardless of their title and department. You know what they say, "a chain is only as strong as its weakest link." If one of us doesn’t perform for any reason, since Picovoice is a small company, it affects the whole team and the growth.

What we offer or have accomplished sounds "crazy" to many. We do "crazy" things because our team consists of high-performing, intelligent, and dedicated individuals running toward the same goal and having a similar type of "crazy." While some enjoy it, we find being a code monkey (or a keyboard monkey for business people) "crazy." Everybody chooses their "crazy." Our team members choose to challenge the status quo, do things differently, and accomplish things others can’t do. That’s why we have a very low turnover rate.

Why do we choose Picovoice?

Picovoice has a unique way of approaching AI, helping us stay competitive in a fast-evolving market dominated by Big Tech. However, we are not that unique when it comes to the values that bring us together.

1. Be the change you want to see.

As humans, we have the privilege to shape the universe. Are you uncomfortable with ethical issues in AI or a few companies having everyone’s data? Then work for or with companies that do things differently and contribute to the change. Spoiler alert: Contributing to the change is not always easy.

2. Find a job you enjoy doing. You will never have to work a day in your life.

Working on things that excite you is easier. Not everything in life, and a job, is delightful. However, when the majority of what you do is meaningful, your job becomes energizing. Humans need energy to grow - physically and intellectually. Integrity is not just about moral uprightness. It also refers to being whole and undivided. Neither humans nor companies grow to their full potential when divided.

3. The more I learn, the more I realize how much I don't know.

Humans know much less than they think. They try to come up with answers immediately without asking any questions, let alone the right questions. Second, humans attribute knowledge to certain things. That’s why many people choose to entertain HIPPOs (Highest Paid Person's Opinions) knowingly or unknowingly.

Working at Picovoice has made us unlearn many things and ask questions - “Why do I do this?” and “How can I do it differently?” at the very least. You can’t constantly push the boundaries while staying in your comfort zone. Dealing with the unknown is a humbling experience.

4. Less is more.

Smaller teams perform better. They make faster decisions and have shorter & fewer meetings. Individuals are empowered to execute their ideas and exercise their judgment rather than getting them validated and shelved. Thus, there is no room for free riders and mediocre performance, as everyone can notice individual contributions (or lack thereof).

5. Hire for potential.

Large corporations are great for mediocre employees and often undervalue the most promising ones, especially in the early years of their careers. Structured performance review processes and cycles come with delays and focus on performance rather than potential. For example, rotational programs delay recent graduates’ contributions for years. How can one differentiate themselves when they get a new assignment right after learning the subject before making an impact? Then, the bell-curve appraisal. The one just below the threshold is generally promised a promotion in the next cycle, causing this year’s high performer to wait more.

Startups solve challenging, mostly unknown problems. While transferable skills help, finding someone with the exact experience is almost impossible, especially in the early stages. Thus, we hire for potential. Experience is easier to gain than the traits such as thoroughness, drive, determination, resilience, and grit.

How’s Life at Picovoice?

  1. AI is evolving fast, requiring everyone in the field to grow and act fast. Hence, everyone joining Picovoice is a self and fast learner who copes with a very steep learning curve. If we were only self or only fast learners, we couldn’t innovate. Self-learners take time to learn. Fast learners expect someone to teach them -which also takes time. Slowness may not be bad, if one aims to be a great follower. Unfortunately, there is no chance for an AI startup to survive if they're a great follower.
  2. AI is not stagnating, and neither should we. Stagnating while others grow means shrinking. Thus, we expect every day to be more productive than the previous one. Our success at Picovoice depends on consistent growth.
  3. We enjoy working at Picovoice. However, we also acknowledge that our pace can be overwhelming for some. Many of us used to work in large corporations before. There is nothing wrong with it. In fact, they offer better work-life balance and perks, training programs, and so on. There are more people to network with, and opportunities to specialize without worrying about end-to-end execution and ownership.
  4. Our work culture encourages self-sufficiency and values fairness and collaboration. It applies to recruitment, too. What it means for candidates is that we follow the standard interview process for each role to evaluate candidates fairly.
    • Please read the job postings and apply to the roles that interest you. You know your skills and what excites you more than anybody else. If you’re not sure what you want to do, spend time to reflect on your experiences. Nobody can and should craft your career path.
    • Unless a position aligns with your primary interests do not apply. Time is scarce. You should spend that time finding and working on what matters to you rather than forcing yourself to do something, including an interview.
    • We inform candidates about the process before they start interviewing with us. Follow the interview process as laid out. If you have feedback, you can email [email protected] or your hiring contact. Although we do not make changes specifically for each candidate, we iterate our process in a way that helps all candidates.
  5. You can check this example interview question and tips.

If you’re excited about shaping the future of AI, join us!

Apply Now